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Negotiating a Debt Settlement With a Debt Collector

Are you in collection and want to negotiate with the debt collector to settle your debt for less than you owe? This video will show you how to do it with great advice from my friends, Gerri Detweiler and Michael Bovee.

We talk about the best time to settle a debt with a debt collector and how much to expect to settle for.

It is possible to settle your own debt with a debt collector and people are having good success in resolving some of their debts in collection.

This video will give you advice and tips to help you to figure out how to best settle your debt with the debt collector, or at least get you headed in the right direction.


Gerri Detweiler: We’re talking about negotiating with a debt collector, so Michael what can you expect when you are trying to negotiate a deal with a debt collector?

Michael Bovee: Well, you’re going to have to have a conversation. This can’t be done in writing, very rarely, so you’re going to be able to use the telephone and most of the time these days, you’re going to find a very open person on the other end to coming to some kind of arrangement with you where you can reduce the overall balance, sometimes in a lump sum and sometimes with reduction and payments, 3-6 months is pretty common. You have to be ready to fund that offer, but that’s what you should start with those expectations.

Gerri Detweiler: So you have to know your bottom line, I mean, you have to know what you can afford to pay the debt collector?

Michael Bovee: Absolutely.

Steve Rhode: And speaking them afford, a lot of people think that debt settlement means that you have to save a little bit of money over a long period of time. In my experience, the people who are best to settle it at are people who have access to cash now, it can make settlements quickly.

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Gerri Detweiler: So how low do debt collectors go and how little will they accept on a debt?

Michael Bovee: You know, it does vary from one collector to the next, I mean, basically there is timing issue, sometimes it’s best to settle that at the end of the month or at the end of a 2 or 3-month period because it’s just an assignment collector and the accounts going to gained back from them because they haven’t been able to collect from you, so there is timing factor and they change if you’re dealing with a debt buyer who has hired a debt collector or they are collecting their own debt but on average, if you can prepare yourself financially to fund a settlement in and around half of the balance and you come in below that, great. If you come in around that, you are prepared.

Gerri Detweiler: So start a little bit lower as you are saying, you have some negotiation room?

Michael Bovee: Sure. Actually, you can start as little as 10%-15%. Most debts dealing with outsider party, assignees, and debt collector that are working for debt buyers, due tend to settle around the 40% range.

Gerri Detweiler: So can you do this on your own?

Michael Bovee: Settling debts a consumer can do absolutely on their own. People have been having even more success with that recently than in years past. All you really need is to know a couple of the tips and tricks, things to do, and things not to do. There is more not to do is than to do’s, so you have to be careful. There are tools and resources out there, consumer recovery network being one of them for as little as $99 that you can get all the information you need to be even more successful in settling your debts on your own and even work with a professional and be assigned to work with them, have access to them a limited one-on-one.

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Steve Rhode: And when you are hiring a debt settlement company, make sure that you’re not paying loads of advanced fees for their services. You can find a debt settlement company that will be willing to work for you and only charge you fees when they deliver their performance. To learn more, visit and we’ll be happy to help you for free.


You are not alone. I'm here to help. There is no need to suffer in silence. We can get through this. Tomorrow can be better than today. Don't give up.

About the author

Steve Rhode

Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.

1 Comment

  • Often in order to Coerce the payment they seek, Debt collectors will make false, deceptive and misleading statements.  Debt collectors will also harass oppress or abuse consumers to maximize the payment they receive.  Debt collectors around the country utilize debt collection tactics forbidden by the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), a federal law which regulates debt collection conduct.  Debt collectors are required to treat consumers with dignity, respect and truth.  Unfortunately, many collectors have found that by lying, threatening and humiliating consumers they receive bigger payments in a shorter period of time.  Debt collectors know that their tactics will often cause  financially struggling consumers to forgo necessities to make payment on the debt being collected in order to stop the harassment and abuse. 

    If you have been the victim of false, deceptive, harassing or oppressive debt collection conduct you could be entitled to damages of up to $1,000.00 under the FDCPA, because the debt collector has violated the law.  In addition you could be entitled to any actual damages you sustained and your attorney’s fees and costs.     If you have suffered any of this type of behavior you need to speak with an experienced FDCPA attorney immediately to protect your rights.    

    Rapa Legal

    Thanks and Regards,
    Jason M. Rapa, Esquire

    Lawyer, Attorney, Lawyers
    Bankruptcy Attorney

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